Difficulty: Easy - for beginners
3/4 cup warm water
1 package active dry yeast (2 1/4 teaspoons)
1 teaspoon sugar
1 cup whole-wheat pastry flour
1 cup bread flour or all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
Use bread machine on dough setting, OR:
1. Stir water, yeast and sugar in a large bowl; let stand until the yeast has dissolved, about 5 minutes.
2. Stir in whole-wheat flour, bread flour (or all-purpose flour) and salt until the dough begins to come together.
3. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured work surface. Knead until smooth and elastic, about 10 minutes. (Alternatively, mix the dough in a food processor or in a stand mixer with a dough hook. Process or mix until it forms a ball. Continue to process until the dough is smooth and elastic, about 1 minute more in a food processor or 4 to 5 minutes more on low speed in a stand mixer.)
4. Place the dough in an oiled bowl and turn to coat.
5. Cover with a clean kitchen towel; set aside in a warm, draft-free place until doubled in size, about 1 hour.
Make Ahead Tip: Prepare through Step 2, cover and refrigerate for up to 1 day. Or tightly wrap the unrisen dough in oiled plastic wrap and freeze for up to 3 months. Defrost in the refrigerator overnight. Let refrigerated or defrosted dough stand at room temperature for 1 hour before using.
Tips: Whole-wheat pastry flour is milled from soft wheat. It contains less gluten than regular whole-wheat flour and helps ensure a tender result in delicate baked goods while providing the nutritional benefits of whole grains. Find it at large supermarkets and natural-foods stores. Store in an airtight container in the freezer.
To Roll Out Pizza Dough: Turn out onto a lightly floured surface. Dust with flour; dimple with your fingertips to shape into a thick, flattened circle. Then use a rolling pin to roll into the desired shape. If your dough â€œresistsâ€ being rolled out, let it rest for about 15 minutes, then try rolling it out again.
To Bake: I prefer to pre-bake my crust a few minutes before adding toppings.
Pre-heat the oven to 450 degrees. Brush the rolled-out crust lightly with olive oil to keep it from getting soggy. Partially bake the crust, add toppings, and then finish baking. Baking time will depend on the thickness of the crust, from about 15 to 20 minutes.